I hear it regularly when meeting with potential clients, “I want to make a video that goes viral”. Understandably so, and really so would I! Unfortunately there are big misconceptions about what it takes to create a viral video online, to get your business millions of hits and massive exposure overnight.
What it takes to go viral.
The #1 element to a videos success (for anything other than cute cats and animal tricks) is creativity and bold innovation. One must be willing to take a risk and be daring. If you are deliberately creating a video for the purpose of reaching the masses, one must realize there no way to guarantee you will achieve this. One must consider how sharable your concept or content is, as it is through your audiences distribution of your video that you attain viral status. The rule is always, “people share content that makes them look good for sharing it”.
The other way to rack up the views is through YouTube SEO (Search Engine Optimization). In 2005 one of my own videos hit “viral” status. Back then I was still producing videos just for fun, and my peers and I produced a music video spoof which happened to rank well for the popular song name (a search done by people all over the world), and landed us the first results for a while. Thus 1.5 Million people have seen me at my most ridiculous…
How its done.
A review of the most successful viral videos created by businesses to promote themselves shows us that, what ever you do, it must be…
A. Shocking in some way.
B. Extremely Engaging
C. NOT specifically focused on your product or service.
Blend Tec’s “Will It Blend” show is a sinning example because they found a way to incorporate their product into an entertaining series where they break and destroy things, mainly expensive electronics such as the iPad when it was first launched. Thats basically it! At no point do they drag on about the many features of their blenders, how it was designed or how it beats out the competition. You are only introduced to their products passively, while at the same time very well entertained. Doing this they have grossed a cool 239 Million views.
The recent “First Kiss“ sensation which hit 83 Million views, features a touching scene where strangers are asked to kiss one another on camera. Ironically this turned out to be anything but extemporaneouse, as it was in fact a commercial for clothing and the strangers where indeed professional actors… My marketing mind says “Brilliant!! Well done indeed!”… While another part of me sees it as somewhat hood winking the viewer. Either way, a success by any standard.
How big brands cheat.
Many viral sensations today are not hits by mistake, even though they may seen to have gotten massive attention organically, often that isn’t exactly the case. To deliberately create a viral video campaign, big brands can boost their video initially with Google Ads, getting it it front of viewers quickly. They also have access to the necessary funds to produce the video as well, and considering the more wild the better, videos created for the purpose of reaching a large audience do require more time and creativity to create.
What you CAN do.
When it comes to marketing of any kind, headlines are absolutely crucial. This is how you get people to click on your video whether it be on YouTube, Facebook or your website. By writing a compelling headline, any kind of video you create will be that much more likely to be viewed. Instead of naming your video about selling real estate in Vancouver being titled, “Vancouver Real Estate3.mp4″, make it intriguing with “The 4 ways to sell your home for 10% more in Vancouver!”
Don’t buy the hype.
Fortunately, you don’t need a viral sensation for your video to be a hit. All you need is a compelling, well produced video which ranks high for a search term relevant to your business and drives visitors to take action ( such as visit your website, or inquire about your product or service).
Video Marketing Question?
Got a question on how to get more exposure with video? Leave a comment here and I’ll respond personally!.